Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A Failed Search for Mindless Knitting

It has been a while since you've heard a peep from me, gentle readers. The reason is that my son was allowed a bit of sanity break after nearly four months of hospital and he came here. For the full story check his blog or his website, I won't go into all of it here. Just that the bone marrow donor we were counting on backed out after first coming in for their blood draw. I wonder if they realize what it means to us? And to say how much I enjoy his company and being able to do something for him. Even waiting on him pretty much in the bed most of the time, exhausted. Even running back to the hospital every other day for transfusions, lots of transfusions. Life is good.

As for knitting content, I am plugging away on those mindless socks, which ended up not being so mindless, typical for me.

Here is a shot of one side.
And here the other. True color is probably closer to this. Look carefully at the patterns. First it was nice double spirals, neatly swirling around the sock. Changed needle size, the spirals zigged/zagged for a bit and then went backwords. Changed needle sizes again at the heel, what do we get, tidy little candy-cane stripes. Isn't it a hoot?
An eye of partridge heel made lovely little houndstooth checks. We shall see if sock the second is even vaguely related. BTW, Wollmeise on size 0's in my tight knitting produces a fabric I can't even stick a needle into. It's as solid as solid can get. Then still searching "mindless knitting", I started another chemo cap in Calmer which was the fiber of preference for my son. I thought I would just do a simple rib pattern in 2X2, but today during the 6 hours at the hospital while waiting for my son's transfusions, I kept looking at the gorgeous Shedir he was wearing and decided I had to do it again. Now the trick is that Shedir flows out of a 1X1 rib and I have here a 2X2. Think I will do a 1/2 inch or so of 1X1, use the current ribbing as a fold-up cuff which he likes, and perhaps do a motif less of the cabling. Hope it works. Perhaps I should run a lifeline?

Speaking of chemo caps, when we go to the Marrow Transplant Center for Steven's transfusions, there is a basket of chemo caps that someone has made. They are in acrylic, the brightest, hideous oranges and greens. Crocheted, stiff as bricks, feel like Brillo pads. I can't even imagine making such a thing for someone who has lost their hair. No one seems to be taking them either.See this? Gorgeous isn't it. That Celtic Memory wanted to cheer me up and she knows me heart and soul. Oh, wow! This is Blue Heron rayon metallic, two skeins of the scrumptious stuff, just begging to be a magnificent stole. Anne Hanson at Knitspot just came up with another lovely pattern, Gale, and I couldn't resist. Thought it might be that perfect mindless knitting project I keep looking for. Anne thought it would be good hospital knitting. We shall see. That woman is the Evil Temptress Extraordinaire. I want to knit almost every design that she comes up with.

Then today Linda, a friend from Sock Camp, sent a totally surprise package of a wonderful book written by a friend of her husband's who survived leukemia and a marrow transplant and wrote about it. He is now the director of the National Marrow Donor Program. This book went straight onto my bed and I plan to start it tonight. Oh yes, Linda also worried I might run out of sock yarn, so she tucked in a skein.
Let's look closely. Hmmmm, I had never heard of this dyer, Pagewood Farm. The yarn is Denali, 450 yards (Yay!) of 80/20 merino/nylon with a very very nice ply. I think I'm really going to enjoy this one. Sock Madness stash? And it's my favorite color, in case someone doesn't know. Yes, I was very cheered, and very touched by Linda's thoughtfulness. I'm really going to miss everyone at Sock Camp this year. BTW, Linda just rode the rode the Stitch ' Ride train from Sacramento to Stitches West. She overheard a knitter say, "I feel like a one-eyed dog in a weenie factory!" I think I love that expression.

Oh my, Sock Madness 2 starts on Thursday and I'm no way prepared. Everyone else I know (especially Celtic Memory and TayaElaine) has swatched and balled their yarns perfectly divided and practiced their Japanese short row toes and heels. The clues are tantalizing. Cousin Mountain Mom submitted a design. I'm so proud of her. I think it is just going to smack me like a snowball (yes, we had snow this week in Texas, crazy huh?). And this is my much loved step-daughter Alexa who came to visit Steven from New Mexico and couldn't resist picking up big Galatoire. She's not that little and he is that big, probably close to the record for a Persian. It was so nice to see her again.


Cindy/Snid said...

Well, it won't be long before the Madness takes over a bit (sock Madness that is!) Had no idea you were dealing with such things with your son. I made a little contribution- hope it helps.

That cat...is HUGE!

Linda said...

I'm glad you like the book and yarn--I hope they help you a little bit. I found the yarn at Stitches. I went to the NMDP website from your link and am looking into registering. I have rheumatoid arthritis, but it's in remission, so I hope I can register. I'm glad you got to have your son at home with you for a while. Blessings to you both.

Deborah (aka Mt. Mom) said...

Thank God for friends like Jo and Linda!

And thank you, cousin, for your encouraging words. That really means something. (Hope you don't change your mind after you see the pattern -- wink.)

Bea said...

Oh the new yarns are nice and I love that sock! Your step-daughter and the cat are cute. That cat is enormous! I bet both of mine together are not as big as Galatoire!

Susan has been keeping me posted on your son, but I'm going to go look at the blog now. We are all pulling for a donor to be found. I wish I could go register...

Micki said...

The sock looks fantastic, and I covet that new sock yarn. :)

Jo at Celtic Memory Yarns said...

Galatoire, HI! (But Tugajuges - hope I spelt your name right - is still my favourite and my pet.)

Hope you're going to be swinging that style of yours in Sock Madness pet - we can't get on without you!

And all love to Steven

bookgrump said...

The sock is gorgeous as is the new yarn.

I'm not ready for Sock Madness either. Someone failed to recognize that it's starting during Texas Schools Week, which means that I'm cooked. It's going on during the last two weeks of my yearbook preparation, which means that I'm really, really cooked. I haven't even picked out my yarn yet!

The two of us will likely be eliminated early. Hopefully, we can sit down on the sidelines after the next few weeks and have some proper time to gab.

Until then, big hugs to you and your son!

Holly said...

friends are important, and family even more so.
Your sock yarns are lovely and hope you had as much fun as I did with Sock Madness.

And no, people can't imagine the effects of having your hope and future go up and down like a yo-yo when pinned on someone else...

Bellarina said...

Hi there! I'm new to the blogging community! I've just picked up knitting and was thumbing through some of Ravelry's best bloggers and came across yours! Beautiful pieces! And I love love love that you've named your cats for New Orleans restaurants, from whence I come!